Confession: I have never been a good speller. I struggled at least as much with spelling in fourth grade as I did with chemistry in 10th. One word, among many, that has always perplexed me is the word “receipt.” Why is the “p” silent? Just to add to my confusion is the word “recipe,” which also does not follow any English phonetic rules (if there even are any). Yet, both words sound and look similar to each other.

Upon investigation, it turns out that receipt and recipe used to have the same meaning and derive from the Latin word recipere, which means to receive or take. Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (1386) contains the first known use of the word receipt and is in reference to a medical prescription formula. The use of receipt as a slip of paper acknowledging the receipt of goods in exchange for an amount of money did not begin until the early 17th century.

The word recipe is first recorded about 15 years after Canterbury Tales in a book on surgery. The imperative form of the original Latin verb meaning “take,” recipe was an injunction and frequently the first word used in a prescription (receipt), followed by the list of ingredients the patient was to consume. An abbreviation in the form of the letter R with a bar through the leg still appears on modern medical prescriptions.

Food and medicine have a long history together, as many of the same ingredients used for food preparation were also key in a physician’s practice. Receipt was first used in a culinary sense in 1716, and recipe was similarly recorded not long after. Recipe has gradually replaced receipt for cooking instructions over the decades since.

Surprisingly, the United States has preserved this original use of “receipt” the longest. Upon digging through old cookbooks for “Heirloom Recipes” on page 54, we came across many old, traditional “receipt” books from Charleston and Savannah. We hope you enjoy this article sharing traditional recipes from families across Columbia and its surrounding cities. Perhaps it will conjure up favorite, or forgotten, memories of your grandmother teaching you her favorite receipts!

From all of us at CMM, a very Merry Christmas and happy holiday season!




Review: My Health is Better in November, Havilah Babcock

My Health Is Better In November, published in 1947 by Havilah Babcock, is a compilation of 35 hunting and fishing stories written by one of South Carolina’s favorite authors. Babcock was actually a native of Virginia, but he spent 38 years as one of USC’s most popular English professors. Living across the street from the Horseshoe at 803 Sumter St., Babcock enjoyed an enviable life as a tenured professor during a time when wild quail abounded. In those days, a man at the end of the work day (or close to it) could rush home, grab his shotgun, a handful of shells, whistle for his dog, and head off for a couple hours of bird hunting before dark. He didn’t have to go far — just the outskirts of town, which in those days might be around Wildewood or Spring Valley. Farmers were happy to allow hunters on their land, and birds were everywhere.

240625.jpgBabcock was a prolific writer. He gained a following and popularity through articles written for Field & Stream as well as other publications. The stories in My Health Is Better In November originally appeared in Field & Stream, Outdoor Life, and Sports Afield during the heyday of the outdoor press when these publications were at their zenith. In this book, Babcock’s stories are humorous “how to” tales on subjects such as what bait to use for bream, the importance of honeysuckle thickets for quail, where to fish for crappie, and how to overcome a shooting slump … as well as how to stay in good standing with your spouse. One of my favorites is a story on how to get rid of chiggers. In this tale, Babcock suffers from the pesky parasite and comes upon squirrel hunter. He asks the hunter how to get rid of them: “‘What kind are they?’ He cocked his head critically, as if the matter called for connoisseurship… [After explaining to Babcock that there is the North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia variety, he goes on to say] ‘thar’s a heap o’ things South Car’lina don’t rate so high in. But I’ll tell you right now, mister, thar ain’t no other state can hold a candle to us in the output of chiggers. Yes, sir’, he snapped his suspenders with state pride, ‘the South Car’lina chigger is in a class by hisself.’”

In Babcock’s day, hunting and fishing were greater pastimes than they are today, but 17 million Americans still hunt, and more than double that fish… making My Health Is Better In November still a relevant choice of reading today. In the final, and titular story, Babcock relates his knowledge of a man (himself), and how nine months out of the year he doesn’t feel too well and some consider him irritable. When the first frost rolls around in November, “there is a noticeable improvement to his health. And when quail season arrives, he is a new man. His outlook is buoyant, his disposition amiable, and the household hears nothing of his woes – not a solitary complaint – for the next three months. For the master of the household is paying ardent court to Bob-White and his bashful bevy.”

Fresh Fall Decorating Ideas

Easy and fabulous tips for upcoming entertaining

By Muffie Vardell Wells

Autumn Table Setting

Decorating your home for Thanksgiving invites natural, earthy, golden snapshots of fall. Forage through your house and yard for natural items– gather an assortment of burlap, raffia, fall leaves, pine cones, pumpkins, gourds, apples, candles, and cut herbs. Focus on fun, inexpensive, and festive!

For a table centerpiece option, use a burlap runner. Zigzag pillar candles down the center and loosely lay eucalyptus throughout. Place red apples and pine cones randomly in the leaves for interest, or, alternately, use small pumpkins and gourds. A few large leaves could also be a decorative accent, and a fall colored tablecloth can serve as an anchor.

Try filling the lower part of glass hurricanes with nuts or berries and set the pillar candle on top. It can also be fun to fill clay flowerpots with greenery and pine cones.

Raffia is your friend. Tie it thickly around pillar candles and attach herbs, such as sage or rosemary. Perhaps you have slices of a tree stump that you can put under the candles. Try tying raffi or colored twine around napkins that hold the silverware. Stick a piece of greenery under the knot. Make place cards from simple squares of cardboard and thread a piece of rosemary at the top. Fresh herbs create an easy way to personalize the table.

Remember to make your centerpieces low. This allows eye contact among guests and encourages lively conversation.

Flickering candles make a holiday table special, and place cards are always a good idea as your guests will not have to think about where they should sit.

Finally, decorate for a fall party way in advance so that the actual entertaining is enjoyable and relaxing.




A Cornucopia of Celebration

By Margaret Clay

Although it may not receive its fair share of attention in the commercial holiday madness that starts with Halloween, Thanksgiving remains a favorite for both its time-honored family traditions as well as new ones that celebrate changes that life brings. The culmination of autumn, Thanksgiving ushers in the magic of Christmas as the last colorful leaves fade and the holiday parties and shopping begin.
For many, Thanksgiving is spent with family and friends enjoying beloved, once-a-year recipes. Rarely is a table complete without a sweet potato dish! Read Susan Slack’s article on page 88 for an interesting history of this Southern staple, which dates back to pre-Columbian South America, as well as for new recipes to add to your family’s holiday must-eats.
Another way to spice up the table this year is to explore decorating with dough. Rebecca Walker and Lillian Lippard offer tips and ideas for adding an artistic presentation to your Thanksgiving dishes. Try their suggestions on page 40, and then experiment with some creations of your own.
If you have ever suffered the disappointment in years past of discovering that your carefully baked turkey is bone-dry, read “Et Cetera” on our last page for Muffie Wells’ secrets to delivering a succulent, crowd-pleasing bird from the oven. Or, create a new tradition by serving equally delicious tiny birds locally raised at Manchester Farms. Read more about this amazing quail farm on page 102.
Sometimes family dynamics change, offering an opportunity to create wonderful new ways to celebrate this special holiday. College, work, or marriages can often mean spending Thanksgiving away from home. “Friendsgiving” is ever more an American tradition, both for those celebrating without family, as well as for those who simply want their own fete with friends. Read Anne Postic’s article on page 50 to learn more about this millennial trend. Perhaps it is time to start your own new tradition!
From all of us at CMM, Happy Thanksgiving!

Surviving a Semester Abroad

USC Student Weathered Hurricane Irma’s Wrath on St. Thomas

By Deena C. Bouknight


When USC sophomore Brittany Carter learned earlier this year she would have a chance to study abroad, she was thrilled. The Blythewood native is a Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism major, so spending the 2017 fall semester at the University of the Virgin Islands on St. Thomas was a dream. She spent the summer working various jobs to pay for travel expenses and looked forward to experiencing aspects of her college major first hand.

However, Brittany barely settled in and made friends with other islanders as well as some foreign students before Hurricane Irma threatened on September 6th.

In a travel log September 14, she shares: “Just a little over a week ago, I was sitting on the beach with my friends, gazing at the bright sun reflecting off of the clear Caribbean water. We sat there talking about how amazing it was that we got to live in paradise. It was hard to believe and too good to be true. Then of course life comes by and changes everything. Now I sit in the shelter that I have been stuck in for a week, and when I look out the window I see an island stripped of its green trees and covered in debris.”

A wall at the Univeristy of the Virgin Islands on St. Thomas impaled with a shard of debris.

When Irma’s force hit the 32-square-mile island, Brittany and 149 others were locked in a concrete shelter on campus – 15 to a room. They huddled together all day feeling the building shake and watching through small spaces of boarded windows trees toppling and fragments whipping past. Miraculously, the shelter sustained minor damage, and no students were seriously injured.

Brittany and the others were not allowed to leave the shelter until the next day, and then only to venture 20 feet from the open door. She and the others were immediately struck by how the once beautiful campus was now littered with car parts, glass, trees, and even roofs. Some of the students’ cars were flipped, others missing parts. Classrooms were filled with water, glass, and other debris. Some were missing parts of roofs. A few days later, Brittany was able to venture a little farther and she says that what she saw cannot be conveyed on the television news or in photographs– from the collapsed homes to much, much worse.

For days, she and others tried to find enough cell service to text home. Brittany’s parents, Kelly and Steven, were – understandably – frantic. Brittany says her mother was trying to figure out how to get her daughter off the island.

Classrooms were filled with water and other debris.

At the same time, fellow St. Thomas native students were distraught about the well-being of family members on other parts of the island. Brittany had to help calm one island student who experienced a panic attack because she was so worried about her family.

Brittany stayed at the shelter for 10 days, relying – like others stranded – on deliveries of water and supplies by volunteer cruise ships. Then a rescue boat took her to St. Croix, which was relatively undamaged by Irma. From there she flew to Puerto Rico, which took a hit from Irma but was yet to be further damaged by Hurricane Maria. At 4 a.m. the next day, she boarded a plane to New York City, and then another to Atlanta, before arriving in Columbia the evening of September 17, missing Hurricane Maria’s destruction of Puerto Rico by three days.

Brittany, far right, was relieved to finally land at Columbia Metropolitan Airport and hug her brother, Blake, and sister, Allie. 

Even though recovery of her class credits for the fall semester is tenuous because of the devastation at the University of the Virgin Islands on St. Thomas, Brittany counts herself fortunate to be safe at home in Blythewood. Surviving Irma’s wrath gave her a new perspective, “I remember watching the news about hurricane damage in the past. I would simply think, “Wow, that’s so sad,” then continue drinking my Starbucks in the comfort of my intact home. Being without power and running water for a period of time definitely helped me realize how victims of natural disasters that I see in the news felt.”

She adds that the hurricane bonded her with fellow students in a way a normal college experience might not have. Some friends plan to return for visits together. She wants to encourage people to visit St. Thomas and support tourism there.

Cheers to Fall!

Leave Behind Cola Town’s Heat with Refreshing Cocktail Recipes 

By Helen Clay

Toast the change of seasons with creative cocktails that compliment the cooling temperatures of fall. The last summer heat still lingers, yet fall breezes begin circulating the city, bringing with them a fresh new batch of seasonal cocktails. Make sure to check out the CMM October article featuring martinis for fall as a counterpart to the drink selections below.

This cocktail selection combines intriguing and exciting flavors to creating refreshing drinks for fall festivities. Expand your beverage menu by experimenting with these enticing concoctions. After all, it is 5 o’clock somewhere…

The Forbidden Apple

3 dashes Angostura bitters

1/2 ounce Grand Marnier

1 ounce Calvados

4 ounces Champagne

Add the first three ingredients to a Champagne flute and top with the Champagne. Garnish with an orange twist.

Courtesy of

Marmalade Whisky Sour

2 1/2 ounces bourbon

1 ounce fresh lemon juice

3/4 ounce Simple Syrup

1 teaspoon orange marmalade

1 dash of orange bitters

1 orange twist


Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all of the remaining ingredients except the orange twist and shake vigorously for 30 seconds to dissolve the marmalade. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with the orange twist.

Courtesy of

Cider Sangria

6 cups green seedless grapes

4 kiwis, peed and thinly sliced into rounds

8 small apples, such as lady apples or crab apples, thinly sliced, stems and seeds removed

1 bottle (750 milliliters) dry white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc

1 quart apple cider

1 cup apple brandy, such as Calvados

Freeze half of the grapes on a parchment lined baking sheet. Place remaining grapes in a large pitcher with kiwis and apples. Stir in wine, cider, and brandy. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours and up to 24 hours. Partially fill drinking glasses with frozen grapes and fill with sangria. Frozen grapes replace ice cubes, keeping the sangria cold without watering it down.

Courtesy of 

Rhubarb & Rosemary

1 1/2 ounce Gin

1/2 ounce Aperol

1 drop orange flower water

1 ounce Rhubarb Purée (recipe included)

1/2 ounce fresh lime juice

1/2 ounce Simple Syrup (1 part sugar, 1 part water)

1 sprig fresh rosemary


Add all ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake well and strain into a tall glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish with two fresh raspberries and a sprig of rosemary.

Rhubarb Purée

6 rhubarb stalks, chopped into 1-inch pieces

3/4 cup sugar

6 strawberries, stems removed

Place the rhubarb and sugar in a small saucepan and add just enough water to cover. Cook over medium-low heat for 10 to 15 minutes or until rhubarb starts to fall apart. Add the strawberries and purée in a blender until smooth. Pass through a strainer and store in a closed container in the refrigerator.

Courtesy of

Cranberry-Pomegranate Lime Cocktail

1/2 cup cranberry-pomegranate juice

2 shots of Vodka

1 lime juice and zest

8 mint sprigs


Fill two small cocktail glasses with ice, then pour in 1/4 cup (or more) of cranberry-pomegranate juice. In a cocktail shaker, mix 2 shots of Vodka with ice, 6 mint springs, lime zest, and lime juice. Shake to combine. Pour the mixture over the cranberry-pomegranate juice. You can choose to stir the cranberry-pomegranate juice with the mixture, or leave the drink as separate layers. Top with extra mint leaves.

Courtesy of

An Evening on the Town

Women unite against breast cancer

By Deena C. Bouknight


Annually, the Lexington Medical Center Foundation hosts Women’s Night Out. This year, October 17 will be a night that begins at 5 p.m. with a Health & Wellness Exhibit and an opportunity to meet Lexington Medical Center physcians. Fun begins with the opening of a silent auction, then dinner at 7 p.m., and a fashion show featuring cancer survivors.

The featured speaker for this year’s event, titled “Fighting Adversity with Faith, Hope, Courage — and a Great Pair of Shoes,” is Jina Moore, Ph.D. A school administrator, Jina was diagnosed with stage II breast cancer at age 45. Reflecting confidence and a positive spirit, Jina danced her way out of the hospital – in a beautiful pair of shoes – each time she completed a radiation treatment. Currently an assistant principal at Spring Hill High School in Chapin, this USC alum will inspire others during the October 17 Women’s Night Out with her personal breast cancer journey.

This event is part of an October-long awarenesss and education initiative for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

There are ways to become a sponsor and be involved. While tickets have already sold out for this year’s event, call (803) 791-2540 for more information.

Get Your Pink On!

Walk for Life to benefit Palmetto Health Breast Center

By Deena C. Bouknight

A parade of pink will pass through the streets of Columbia this Saturday, October 14. In fact, thousands of walkers and runners are anticipated for the 27th Walk for Life and Famously Hot Pink Half Marathon, 10K, and 5K that begins and ends at Spirit Communications Park.

The color pink first came to symbolize breast cancer survivors in the early 1990s when pink ribbons were given out in New York City during a Race for the Cure. Now people automatically think pink whenever there is a mention of a breast cancer associated event. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and even First Lady Melania Trump showed support by having the White House lit up with a pink hue the first Sunday of this month.

Online registration will be open until noon TOMORROW, Oct. 11th. After that time, paper registrations for walkers will be accepted at the Expo on Oct. 13 at Spirit Communications Park. Paper race registrations will be accepted by Strictly Running at the Expo on Oct. 13, 7 a.m.-1:30 p.m., at Spirit Communications Park. Race registrations will not be accepted on Oct. 14.

Registrants can pick up their t-shirts, bibs, and chips during curbside pick-up Thursday, Oct. 12, 4-6 p.m. at Spirit Communications Park, at the Expo Friday, Oct. 13, 7 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at Spirit Communications Park, or on the day of the event, Saturday, Oct. 14, beginning at 6:15 a.m.

Registration includes a cotton T-shirt for walkers and a performance shirt for runners. However, breast cancer survivors will receive a commemorative pink bandana.

The schedule of events for October 14 looks like this:

  • Walk for Life late registration 6:30 a.m.
  • Famously Hot Pink Half Marathon start 7:15 a.m.
  • 10K race start 7:30 a.m.
  • 5K race start 7:40 a.m.
  • Walk for Life start 7:45 a.m.
  • 5K medal ceremony 9 a.m.
  • 10K medal ceremony 9:30 a.m.
  • Half marathon medal ceremony 10 a.m.

According to the U.S. Breast Cancer Statistics, 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. A man’s risk is about 1 in 1,000. Proceeds from these signature fundraising events, led by Palmetto Health Foundation, benefit Palmetto Health Breast Center in Columbia, S.C. Proceeds will stay in the community to help purchase a seventh 3D mammography unit at Palmetto Health Breast Center. The new 3D unit will be used for screening and diagnostic mammograms and will improve the early detection of breast cancer.

Visit for information on parking, the Expo, and event day.

From the Editor: October 2017

Autumnal Attractions

By Margaret Clay

I just love October. The burnt fall hues, the cooler breezes, boots, scarves, smart jackets, and yes, even the pumpkin spice craze … I eagerly anticipate it all.

It is also a big month for deer hunters as the “rut” reaches its peak. Read “Hiding in Plain Sight” on page 60 to learn all about the newest trends in hunting attire as well as the history behind the traditional sporting wardrobe. Thankfully, one faster-growing component for the hunting fashion industry is an expanding female repository. I spent many a hunt growing up with a spare pair of my father’s camo pants comically synched around my waist with a belt. It was a look made complete by three pairs of thick, wool socks so that I could increase my odds of walking in the enormous, male-sized boots at the end of my waders. According to Lucy Mahon, I was not alone.

However, having all the latest techy gear might, in reality, not make you look any less ridiculous! Read Tom Ryan’s humorous take on the Southern hunter on page 22 to see the category in which you — or your spouse — may fall.    

For those opposed to making themselves mosquito bait as the sun sets and who would rather spend their evenings sipping a cocktail, read “A Capital City Twist” on page 42 to learn about the history of the martini and spice up your own bartending skills with some local, award-winning recipes.

Our photo essay in this issue features many of the beautiful photographs Robert Clark shared with us from his statewide travels to South Carolina’s historic cemeteries. October leads up to All Saints Day, the church’s annual remembrance and celebration of the lives of those who have died in the past year, and Robert’s stunning photographs capture the sublime beauty of these memorials, starting on page 76.

While Oct. 31 is best known and celebrated today as Halloween, “All Hallows Eve” (the eve of All Saints Day) is also the anniversary of Martin Luther’s nailing of the 95 theses on the church doors at Wittenberg, and this year marks the quincentenary of that decisive moment that forever changed the course of history. Read Tom Smith’s article on page 34 to learn more about this controversial figure who was not only a theologian but also a brilliant composer and, more than 200 years later, a powerful inspiration to Bach.

We hope you enjoy these and the other articles in this issue!